Making your offer

Currency Issues

The purchase price of your property will be in Euros. This price includes agency commission but does not include the Notaire’s fee and taxes. As an indication, when buying a property over five years old, which nearly all our properties are, the Notaires' fees come to about 7%, the majority of which is the equivalent of stamp duty. The Notaire’s fees can be confirmed before putting in an offer.

Surveys

Building surveys are not usually done in France but surveyors do exist. We have a local English RICS qualified surveyor who can give you a full UK-type survey, if you wish. The other option is to have a registered builder's opinion on the property, this is what the French sometimes do. We can discuss these options with you before you offer on any property.

Legal Advice

You should also take advice on your inheritance provision. Whatever your nationality, the inheritance of your property is subject to French law and the provision made has to be included in the house-buying contract. We advise consulting a legal representative on this as French inheritance law is extremely complex and you don't want to find a surviving partner paying unnecessarily high death duties if the worst should occur. Again we can arrange this advice for you.

Offer Conditions - 'Clauses Suspensives'

An offer to purchase can include any number of clauses and conditions, some of which a standard – others of which are at the specific request of the buyer (such as making the purchase dependent on selling another property first). Whilst the buyer is able to request any condition, these must be accepted by the vendor – and achieving such agreement forms part of the overall negotiation.

A common 'Clause Suspensive' is that of obtaining of a mortgage. (So common in fact, that if you are not applying for a mortgage you will have to insert a special paragraph in your contractto confirm this. A mortgage application cannot be made without a signed, first contract accompanying the application form). Be aware that when purchasing with a mortgage, the Notaire will make a further charge to register the lender’s interest on the property, normally about 1.5% of the mortgage amount.

Inclusion of Inventories

Experience shows that every transaction includes some element of fittings, fixtures, equipment and furnishings. For the avoidance of any doubt on any side of the equatin, we are extremely thorough in detailing what has been agreed and this list forms part of the Compromis, Further details can be found under ‘Inventories’.

Role of the Notaire

Unlike in the UK or many other countries in the world, it is not normal for parties to have separate solicitors. In France, one Notaire acts for both parties. A Notaire is the only person empowered to convey property in France. We will recommend a local Notaire. The Notaire is able to advise on any question regarding property or family law. If you would prefer some additional advice from your own personal solicitor, we can also recommend a local solicitor who specialises in this area.